They say a picture is worth a thousand words. If so, what are words worth? Are they a matchstick struck in a dark room, soon to dwindle and be tossed aside, forgotten? A heartfelt promise written in the sand, only to be washed away with the rising of the tide, never fulfilled?
No, words are much more than they appear on paper (or electronic screen); they have an impact on the very way we define things, people, even ourselves. The pen is mightier than the sword, but the tongue is a dagger cloaked in shadow, striking its mark with ruthlessness, showing no remorse.
Making sense of life
I have often considered my state of self, in comparison to what I wish my life would be (or could be). I study the aspects of my daily paths, what choices I have made, and what choices I might make should I live the same moments over again. To wonder what life would be like if I could change those moments that changed me forever, to avoid the broken strings that I now graze my hands across in attempts to make sense of what was, what is, and what is to come.
It is undoubted that, within myself, I am broken. If any does not believe this to be true of themselves, then I suggest you reevaluate where you think your blessings come from, or joy, or anything good in life. Certainly it is none of your doing, and almost as certainly we forget to acknowledge His hand upon us.
When I try to picture my life as an instrument to bring God glory, I often see myself as the dilapidated guitar sitting in the corner, hoping that I can somehow make myself good enough to be played. I consistently attempt (and fail) to make my own way in life, as if I could do it without God’s help. When I recognize this, I then picture myself simply damaging myself further than what has already been done. A useless artifact collecting dust in the corner.
Restoring our lives
A poem I learned when I was younger presents this analogy well. In the end, the violinist brings the dusty and out of tune instrument back to its original luster, and plays a melody that is pleasing to all who hear it. This is what I have come to realize to be true in my own life. I am attempting to be something I’m not. I am the broken guitar, that’s gathering dust in the corner, separated from the Master, who’s touch is enough to restore the life and beauty that lies beneath the shell of selfishness.
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.” 2 Corinthians 5:17
Through Christ, I am new, an instrument to be used for His Glory, and not for my own. I always wish that God would use me for great things, and the more I pray for this to be the case, the more I realize I wanted it for myself, not for God. I wouldn’t be where I am without Him. I would be on a collision course of self and destiny – eternity away from God.
I owe Him much more than my earthly life, so it is the least I can offer Him. I never cease to thank Him that He saw past me, saw His Son in me, and gave me a chance to be saved from my sins.
“In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, receiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls.” 1 Peter 1:6-9